Families are Important to Addiction Treatment and Recovery

Posted on 09/25/12 11:06:am


Addiction affects not only the patient, but also the entire family. The clinicians at Roger’s believe in educating and supporting families to develop healthier, more satisfying ways to communicate. Michael Miller, MD, FASAM, FAPA, Medical Director of the Herrington Recovery Center, emphasizes that involving families during treatment helps them come to a shared understanding about the complex nature of addiction. “While I think it’s crucial for families to understand what the disease called addiction is, it’s equally important for them to understand what recovery is – not only for the person who has this illness, but also what recovery is for them as a family.”

At the Herrington Recovery Center, Ron Housseye, MA, LMFT, SAC-IT, a certified marriage and family therapist, coordinates family therapy sessions. “It’s important that both patients and family members are willing to get down to personal honesty and humility before recovery can take place. Through education, we help family and friends to learn more about the disease and the ways their actions impact the user. It’s also important that patients begin to understand how their disease affects those around them.”

As an adjunct to family therapy sessions, Housseye leads a Family and Friends Program on two Saturdays each month. “The program allows them to be a part of the treatment process, which is ideal. With the support and encouragement of family and friends, we’re hopeful that patients will get – and stay – on track with recovery.”

In Rogers’ day and evening treatment programs, family recovery is emphasized through education sessions and by connecting family members with community support groups like Al-Anon. “We talk about family recovery and what they need to do through Al-Anon family groups or Families Anonymous,” notes Beth Shaw, APSW, CSAC, the primary therapist for Chemical Dependency Services at Rogers’ Milwaukee location. “Making sure that the family understands addiction and knows how to provide support, without enabling the addiction, is an important piece of the puzzle as patients put their life back together.”



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